U.S. unemployment hits 7.6%
Companies took 598,000 people off their payrolls in January, pushing the unemployment rate to 7.6 percent from 7.2 percent, according to figures released Friday by the U.S. Labor Department.
The one-month job loss is the worst since December 1974 and the unemployment rate is at its highest level since September 1992, according to CNNMoney.com.
The nation has lost 1.8 million jobs in just the last three months and 3.6 million since the start of the recession in December 2007.
Transportation and warehousing lost 44,000 jobs in January and 202,000 since the start of the recession as demand to move goods fell, the government said. Most of the decline occurred during the last five months. January job losses included 25,000 in trucking, 9,000 for transportation support activities and 4,000 for couriers and messengers.
The manufacturing sector lost 207,000 jobs in January, the largest one-month decline since October 1982. Construction employment fell by 111,000. ' Eric Kulisch